"Shadow of the Dolls," the second volume of the Ossicles series, is a phonographic meditation on doll consciousness, a term associated with the concept with ego death, but in this instance has to do with the perception of the undersized, the miniature, and the overlooked. An appreciation, or just the acknowledgement, of the small and undramatic. A celebration of the modest. I was interested in recognizing and personalizing the ordinary. I also wanted to consider the idea of the doll - a cipher created in our image, into which we project ourselves, and from which we unexpectedly discover new personalities as we are reflected back.
These tracks began as the documentation of daily life, the thing that we most often forget to be present to. Musically, I chose to frame and customize these moments, integrating my personal responses to the events, as an artist might shade a line drawing, or a photographer may choose to develop their film.
Notes on the tracks:
1 chic boutique:
This is perhaps the track most rich in allusions. A randomly captured moment on the day after Christmas, it is a slightly manipulated recording of my 4 1/2 year old daughter playing with her new Disney Princess cash register while an episode of Project Runway plays in the background. The reality show, in which fashion designers compete for money and prestige while balancing art, commerce, and practicality, is juxtaposed with a toy that presents the princess fantasy to young girls (presumably), and introduces them to the idea of luxury, value, and basic arithmetic. You can hear my daughter respond to the built-in voice that mediates the interaction between human and machine. She bangs on the toy repeatedly, not with anger or violence, but in exploration of how this new toy works as she teaches herself how to use it.
2 lullaby and:
Room ambiance emerges from a cloud of bit reduction; eventually my daughter sings herself to sleep.
3 asleep in the wig factory:
(I can no longer identify the origin of these sounds!)
A children's swim lesson at an indoor pool ends in a quavering levitation of pitch.
5 forget what you know:
A child's voice in the distance, as it is lost and found, darting between the speakers, reappearing in variable fragmentation.
6 le jardin clos:
Room ambiance combined with the tiny scratchings of some bird or animal outside our family room window.
7 how soon can i leave without letting everyone know i'm uncomfortable being here:
Cat toys and carpet tacks.
8 shadow of the dolls:
A remix of a popular sixties tune about finding our way back to what is left of value after a period of exploration or, maybe, an irresponsible foray into self indulgence.